Her voice reeling from a guttural howl to a tremulous whisper, Mary Bridget Davies doesn’t so much portray Janis Joplin as she channels her. The mesmerizing Davies is the star of A Night With Janis Joplin, the touring musical running at Austin’s Zach Theatre through March 8. Although designed as a tribute to the Port Arthur–born blues and rock singer who became an international star in the late sixties, the show gives equal attention to her early musical influences. A supremely gifted supporting cast belts out seminal works from Odetta, Bessie Smith, Nina Simone, Etta James, and, of course, the incomparable Aretha Franklin. But it’s Davies who rules the stage, crooning her way through the singer’s greatest hits from “Summertime” to “Me and Bobby McGee.” When she steps back out for the inevitable encore, the audience joins her for “Mercedes Benz,” more than a few tearing up as they ask an unanswerable question: If Joplin hadn’t died of an accidental heroin overdose at age 27, what would the musical world be like today?
—Pat Sharpe, executive editor
Erykah Badu’s Instagram Video
Erykah Badu’s elusive nature makes us love her more. The multihyphenate Dallas artist has never been one to post her daily happenings on social media—save for the occasional selfie highlighting her makeup and jewelry. But earlier this week, Badu posted a video to her Instagram that celebrates motherhood and legacy, providing a more intimate look at her life. Jack Stauber’s “Peppermint” plays in the background as each generation of Badu’s family introduces the next with a simple “come on, mom.” The video, captioned “‘Mom.’ – ancestry in progress. ❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️ 15, 48, 70, 92,” features Badu and her daughter Puma, as well as her mother and grandmother. I can’t count how many times I’ve watched the video since it was posted, and I know what I’ll be doing with my family at our next gathering.
—Kennedy Williams, editorial intern
San Antonio Zoo’s ‘Cry Me a Cockroach’ Event
If you aren’t feeling up to a traditional Valentine’s Day celebration this year, the San Antonio Zoo is offering a solution with its first “Cry Me a Cockroach” event. Participants can give an ex’s name to a cockroach or rat that will be fed to the zoo’s reptiles and birds on February 14. Naming a cockroach costs $5, and rats are going for $25. If you don’t live in San Antonio, no matter: watch the zoo’s Facebook livestream to see the Valentine’s Day feast.
—Lawson Freeman, editorial intern